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Imus, Law of Attraction and Bad Hair Days

by Lorna Levy

 

This is a little article I wrote in response to the Imus incident in 2007 with the Rutgers Women's Basketball team to answer a question asked in my yahoo group.

Q. >> by now, i'm sure most of us have read or heard about the disdainful remarks that imus made about the african americans on the rutgers and
tennessee women's basketball teams .....

>> but what i would like to ask the group is....what is the law of
attraction saying to this nation (and the world) through sexism and racism?

A. Pam,

Thanks for such a deep question. It takes a lot of thought to even attempt to answer this, and I thought about it for awhile before I attempted it. I have a lot of random thoughts about it that probably don’t hold together, but I’ll give it my two cents.

First, Law of attraction works mostly at the individual level. This whole brouhaha is only affecting those who let themselves be affected by it. I’m trying to let this be between Imus and the basketball team. I don’t want to form any strong opinions toward it (which would be negative judgment) because I don’t want to focus my attention on anything that will attract to me what I DON’T want. If we can take ourselves out of it, we are affected only as observers and really, we are not affected at all – except by our indignant outrage and opinions we form. Indignant outrage brings with it more to be outraged about. I’m not choosing that.

That doesn’t negate the point that Amerika is a racist society – we all know that – and that we (black folks) have all chosen to incarnate here for our own reasons. Why would a soul be willing to subject itself to being treated as less than? Perhaps it gives greater learning and greater compassion. Perhaps it is a karmic debt. I don’t know, but I know we are all here by choice and nothing happens to us except by choice. So, at some level we have declared we are willing to have this experience – perhaps to transmute it into something greater.

Second, Imus is an idiot and has been for many, many years. This is not the first racist thing he’s said, nor will it be the last. The question then, is why has he been on the radio for so long spewing his vitriol? An interesting point was made on another list I read: why is it OK for black men to call women ho’s in song, but a white man can’t use the same word? Why aren’t we in protest over all the gansta rappers that use the same terminology to refer to women – the mothers of their children - who should be seen as goddesses? Where is our outrage there? We get all excited about the ‘n’ word; why not this?

We allow all kinds of racism and denigration. It gets very murky when you try to argue a double standard, i.e. it’s OK for the gansta’s to say it because they don’t mean it as an insult. Or when you argue about someone’s intent. Although it has been taken as an insult, Imus says his intent was to be funny and edgy. He and his producer went on in that vein for a few minutes. Do we trust his intent and let it be OK, as we let it be OK for us black folk to insult each other? Or, if it is wrong for him, is it wrong for everybody, all the time? Who gets a pass and who doesn’t, and why? There are a lot of racist people on the radio – Rush Limbaugh comes to mind also. And Howard Stern, who I listen to religiously. (really, I adore him) Many people think he’s racist. The edgiest, most racist commentators have the highest ratings. Does that make it OK because they are making money for their sponsors and their station owners?

Third, I support free speech. And if someone feels this way, I want to know it. I don’t want it suppressed so I forget there are people like this in the world. I want to know!

Forth, on a global level – we, as Americans, think we are better than everybody else. We start wars for bogus reasons against other black people; we don’t pick on anybody white. We proselytize and push our religion on everyone else with no respect for their religions or traditions. We steal land and oil and water – and I could go on and on. Perhaps this is a wake up call to the larger world that this is unacceptable. Perhaps Imus and the team agreed to play out this little drama to make a point to the world that we are all one. And we are all the same.

Or perhaps, as the entire world grows in awareness of our oneness, we collectively agreed to have this event happen to raise our awareness of injustice and racism. Diane Sawyer on CBS, this week, is doing shows on the women of Afghanistan and Saudi Arabia - how they are often sold by their parents, beaten daily for the smallest transgression, married as young as age 4 – and other atrocities. Maybe it is no mistake that these two events happened at the same time. The judeo-christian world – and that includes Islam as an offshoot of xianity – has always been mean to women. As we move into the age of Aquarius – the humanitarian – perhaps our attention will be called to even more injustice, so we can right it. I just read, while at lunch, that Google Earth is calling attention to the war in Darfur, so that enough outrage will be generated that people will stop it. Maybe Imus is a small part of this same trend.

On the other hand, perhaps the team had a lot of insecurity, for whatever reasons. Maybe the girls are all on athletic scholarships and feel inadequate academically. Or maybe most of the other teams are white (I don’t know, I didn’t watch the games) and the girls felt not as attractive – so they drew to them someone to voice what they were thinking. I’m on a few lists about black hair and locks, and it is still, always, astonishing to me the racism and ignorant comments women say they get about their hair. These comments are not from employers or white folk, these comments come from permed and straightened sisters. There has been a thread recently about how most African women wear their hair permed and processed and how they, along with our Caribbean brothers and sisters, are taught that anyone with dreads is dirty and a criminal. Seriously – our hatred of our natural selves knows no bounds. So, perhaps the team collectively, was having a bad hair day. Maybe they felt they
were sweating their hair out and didn’t look good. Imus used the adjective ‘nappy-headed’ – so hair was somehow (energetically) an issue there.

Now you know I made that ‘bad hair’ reference facetiously – but in all seriousness. One ‘bad hair’ moment would not create a fire storm of comment like this. But years, or even centuries of denigration and low self esteem could come to a head in a situation like this and result in public denigration..

On Imus’ side, maybe his ratings were declining and he needed more publicity. There are some who say any publicity is good publicity. People who never heard of Imus are talking about him now. And he runs a ranch for cancer kids in Texas – maybe he needed more money for them and he put out a request to the Universe for more recognition. This was one way for him to get it. I’m sure he has far more supporters in what he said than we realize. For someone who is rich as Imus, a two week suspension is negligible. So while these may not be the exact reasons, I’m sure everyone involved got exactly what they were vibrating.
Me, I try to “know” my worthiness, my deservingness and my beauty and to be untouched by anything that lessens that. I make it a point to NOT listen to the news.

All these reasons are pure speculation. We can never know the vibes of another, nor can we really know what beliefs someone holds or what is in their hearts. All we can do is tend to our own attractions, and hold our vibe where we want it to attract to us the good, the beautiful and the true. And the joy!